Posed still from CITY LIGHTS (1931)

Thinking of the cane was perhaps the best piece of luck I ever had. One reason is that the cane places me, in the  minds of the audience, more quickly than anything else could. The other is that I have developed the cane until it has almost a comedy sense of its own. Often, I find it curling itself around someone’s leg, or rapping someone on the shoulder and getting a laugh from the audience almost without my knowing that I was directing its action….

–Charlie Chaplin, “What People Laugh At,” American Magazine, November 1918

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